Marriage Therapy in Boston, MA
Improve Your Relationship in Marriage Therapy at Thrive Boston
What if, while you were sleeping, the problems that have been bothering you and your spouse were gone? Money conflicts. Parenting challenges. In-law issues. Communication problems. Even infidelity. What if everything was resolved? Take a few seconds and think about it.
- What would your life be like?
- Where would you and your spouse both be when you woke up?
- How would you feel toward your spouse?
- How would your spouse feel toward you?
- What would be the first thing you would do?
It's an interesting question, isn't it? It's called, "The Miracle Question" and therapists often use it to help new marriage counseling clients, like you, determine what they really want (and need) to change in their life and marriage. Do your answers to the miracle question seem impossible for you and your marriage? You are not alone. Many people feel the same—that their marriage is beyond repair or that their dream relationship is not achievable.
The marriage therapists at Thrive Boston have found (after helping literally thousands of couples improve their relationships and marriages) that once couples identify the specific problems in their marital relationship and also identify what they want their marriage to be, it is often very possible to make that dream a reality. Many of our clients have found that change in their marriage is more within reach than they ever thought possible. To find the same help and hope, begin marriage therapy today at Thrive Boston.
How Can Marriage Therapy Help?
The marriage therapists at Thrive Boston are true leaders in the mental health field. Marriage therapists from our team have been featured in professional and national publications including:
More importantly, the team at Thrive Boston is caring, experienced, and available to help you and your spouse make lasting improvements to your marriage. Unsurprisingly, marriages face staggering challenges. Consider the following:
- Communication Problems
- Unresolved or Destructive Arguments
- Parenting Conflicts and Challenges
- Painful Pasts (from before the marriage)
- Infidelity or Adultery
- Overburdened Schedules and Consistent High Stress
- Uncertainty About the Marriage's Future...
These are just a few issues that can cause serious marital problems.
An Important Marriage Therapy Exercise: Love Banking
World-renowned author and marriage researcher Dr. John Gottman has developed a simple, but effective, practice known as "Love Banking." When practiced, love banking is one of many exercises that can help couples, regardless of their marital problems, build trust and positive energy within their relationship.
This is how it works: Think about your relationship with your spouse as a bank account. That account can either have sufficient funds or it could be overdrawn. Every interaction you have with your spouse is either a deposit or a withdrawal.
Couples experiencing relational challenges make a lot of withdrawals. A withdrawal is any conflict, request, demand, or criticism between you and your spouse. For example, if you say,
- "Please turn off the garage light."
- "Wait one second, I'll be there in a minute."
- "You always forget to hang up your towel."
These sound like simple statements, but they are withdrawals. And these examples do not even include the arguments, insults, lies, affairs, and serious problems marriages too often experience.
Without deposits, withdrawals mean the same thing for your marriage account as they do for your bank account. It becomes quickly depleted. When people’s financial bank account is empty, they bounce checks. When people’s emotional bank account is empty, they may feel angry, lonely, dreadful. Being around their spouse is more difficult than being alone.
Here is the cure to a depleted emotional bank account: Dr. Gottman's research reveals that healthy relationships (i.e., they are not overdrawn) need to have 5 deposits for every 1 withdrawal. That is right—the ratio is 5-to-1. It can be tough to make that ratio, especially if you and your spouse have not been getting along, but it works.
A deposit is made anytime love or caring is communicated among spouses. There are 5 ways to make a deposit:
- Words of Affirmation: This love style uses words to build up another person. With people who have this love style, even the smallest affirmation or encouragement goes a long way. Whether spoken or written, the goal is to affirm the other person.
- Gifts: This love style involves tokens of appreciation. Gifts (even inexpensive ones) tell people that they are important and loved. It is not materialistic or selfish. Sometimes, positive thoughts about a loved one are best communicated in a gift, a tangible reminder of being loved.
- Acts of Service: This love style involves one person doing things that another person will appreciate, even small acts. Asking what can be done to help a spouse or child, and then responding to small requests, is a great way to begin loving through acts of service.
- Quality Time: Going to breakfast, sitting on the couch together, having a conversation, and taking a walk; this love style is about giving undivided attention to another person. The activity that takes place during the quality time is really unimportant—focusing on the other person is what counts.
- Physical Touch: An embrace, a kiss, holding hands, and a hand on the shoulder are all expressions of love. Physical touch is about tender, caring human contact. Both young and old, people benefit emotionally from loving, physical touch.
Couples can learn what ways each partner best receives love and overdose each other with that kind of deposit. The key is to ensure the marriage has 5 deposits for every one withdrawal. Every couple who comes to Thrive Boston for marriage therapy learns this formula, and our therapists help them practice and perfect this exercise.
Schedule Marriage Therapy At Thrive Boston Today
Are you ready to make proactive changes in your marriage? Is it time to explore new ways to connect and communicate? We want you to find the help and healing your marriage needs. We offer flexible appointments, including evening and weekend availability, and we accept most major insurance plans. Call us at 617-395-5806 to schedule your first appointment.